Sonwabile Ndamase, the man who created the iconic Madiba Shirt, collaborated with the Scientology Volunteer Ministers to bring basics of fashion and practical skills to his students in order to prepare them for the ruthless world of fashion design and life in general. Through his FP&M SETA accredited South African Fashion Design Agency (SAFDA) Fashion School, Ndamase equips his students with the technical skills of fashion and the practical tools for life of tackling social issues.
In a recent video on the YouTube channel of the Scientology Volunteer Ministers of South Africa, the original creator of the iconic Madiba Shirt, describes how he uses the Scientology Tools for Life to empower the youth of South Africa. In his fashion school, he teaches more than just technical training but adds soft skills such as communication, conflict resolutions, barriers to learning, financial ethics and more provided by the Scientology Volunteer Ministers.
Ndamase knows what it means to have to overcome adversity in the cut throat fashion industry. Coming from a small village in the Eastern Cape, he had to fight his way to the international stages of fashion to showcase his unique taste in fabric, a taste that would lead him to the dressing one the most iconic figures in the world –President Mandela. Despite these hardships and challenges, he found himself designing the iconic Madiba Shirt and now he is the Executive President of the South African Fashion Design Agency, as well as the head of the Vukani Range Creations fashion house, and founder of the Annual Vukani Fashion Awards.
Last year, his taste and aesthetics for fashion even brought him to the global stage of Paris and Milan Fashion Week where his Vukani range was met with international acclaim.
After his many years in the industry, Ndamase’s passion now lies in passing on the knowledge to the upcoming generation of fashion designers in South Africa. He wants to help them succeed in the industry and enable them to achieve their goals.
“I am saddened by the current state of our country and the struggles we go through. Our entire future depends on the youth and I want to play my part in inspiring them,” said Ndamase in the youtube video.
“I got introduced to the Tools for Life program offered by the Scientology Volunteer Ministers and I saw that these tools could be useful in empowering our people”, added Ndamase.
Convinced that he had found a practical way to empower his students, he exposed his students to the programme and morphed it with his curriculum to give them technical training in fashion and vital life skills. This proved to be so successful that Ndamase now uses the knowledge to train more youth and this is something he is very proud of.
According to Ndamase, the Tools for Life are very applicable in producing personal development. They touch on individual and personal issues. “We must work together to change our country. One thing I have learned is that you must share experience with others. We must share the cake. No one must eat alone,” continued Ndamase.
Chantel Dube, one of Ndamase’s students, said “Mr. Ndamase loves to share knowledge, he loves to teach us about life and now he has brought us the Tools for Life and I feel like this is really helpful with all the issues we face in life and at home.”
“I have also been able to plough back into my hometown of Eastern Cape where I have used these tools to help people affected and infected by gender based violence. It gives them the foundation of Ubuntu. Understanding these tools can help you in your wellbeing and be the person you want to be.” Concluded Ndamase.
Ndamase also hinted on future plans to grow African fashion beyond the borders of the continent. He mentioned several partnerships in the pipelines that will bring into life the first ever African Fashion Art and Culture Festival and even a US tour to bring African fashion to the world.